Monday, June 23, 2008

K-Community hosts a focus group on Idea Management

K-Community, a Knowledge Management professional group based in Bangalore, India recently hosted a focus group on Idea Management systems attended by representatives from organizations including Capgemini, TCS, Wipro, Honeywell, Robert Bosch, and Accenture.

The discussion was reported by Vinay Dabholkar, and some of the key points raised in the discussion were:
  • "All organizations use some tool or the other for idea management." Some of the organisations present used Idea Management tools from a vendor, others used Idea Management tools developed in-house. None of the participants expressed a sentiment that their tool was a limiting factor
  • Most organisations were putting an effective in putting appropriate supporting organisational structure around the Idea Management initiative
  • One of the challenges was identifying criteria for ideas that were strong enough to guide development of useful ideas but not so strong as to be limiting
  • A second challenge was that may ideas are by their nature cross functional, and the challenge is when to involve a cross functional group in the discussion in the ideation phase
  • A third challenge was obtaining the right mix of radical and incremental (or at least less radical) innovations in the portfolio mix
  • A fourth challenge was "sustaining the innovation engine" over time. If sustainability is perceived as an extra task then motivation for innovation by participants may vary over time.
  • The final challenges were integrating Knowledge Management with Idea Management and maintaining the "soul" of the innovation process while developing processes and structure around it.

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